Academic Catalog

Social Justice & Cultural Studies (SJC)

SJC 1000  Introduction to Justice, Equity, and Cultural Studies  (5 Credits)  
This course will introduce students to key questions, ideas, and figures that shape cultural studies as an interdisciplinary field. Drawing from this framework, students will begin to explore how histories, theories, and practices inform an understanding of equity in contemporary societies and explore ways literature, film, art, religion, and scholarhip can begin to work towards liberation.
SJC 2248  International Fiction  (5 Credits)  
Explores contemporary international literature written in English, with attention to the ways in which conditions of colonialism, migration, and globalization have re-shaped national identities and belonging.
SJC 3004  Literature, Gender, and Sexuality  (5 Credits)  
Explores diverse perspectives on gender and sexuality in literary texts, criticism, and theory. Typical topics include social constructions of masculinity and femininity (including methods of reinforcement and resistance); sexual identities; historically evolving conceptions of the body and desire; and representations of sex and gender in relation to various other identities, such as race, class, nationality, and religion.
SJC 3331  Race Riots Uprisings  (5 Credits)  
This course introduces students to literature that engages the history of “race riots” in the United States, including uprisings of enslaved people, mob lynchings, attacks on Black-owned businesses, and protests against police brutality. Typical authors studied: Nat Turner, David Walker, Charles W. Chesnutt, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Anna Deavere Smith, Mat Johnson, and Claudia Rankine. We will also examine historical documents, recent events, popular culture artifacts, and social justice movements to contextualize these literary works.
SJC 3332  African American Literature  (5 Credits)  
Introduces students to African American literature from the nineteenth century to the present. Topics include slavery and resistance, the Harlem Renaissance, the Black Arts movement, and black popular culture. We will read such authors as Harriet Jacobs, Lanston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, Richard Wright, Ralph Ellison, and Toni Morrison. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3334  United States Multi-Ethnic Literature  (5 Credits)  
Textual and cultural study of U.S. multiethnic literatures, such as Indigenous/Native American, African American, Asian American, Jewish American, and Latinx literatures. Paying close attention to the dynamics of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, socioeconomic class, immigrant status, regional culture, and religion, this course invites students to develop more complex understandings of what it means to be “American.”
SJC 3339  United States Latinx Literature  (5 Credits)  
Introduces students to English-language literature written by North American Latinos and Latinas. Topics include the legacy of Spanish colonialism, the dissemination of Mexican, Cuban, Puetro Rican, and Dominican cultures, the development of "Spanglish," and the controversy over immigration and the border. We will read such authors as Rudolfo Anaya, Richard Rodriguez, Sandra Cisneros, Ana Castillo, Jimmy Santiago Baca, and Junot Diaz. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3380  African Literature  (5 Credits)  
Examines the work of a variety of authors from the continent of Africa in the light of colonialism and its aftermath. Focuses primarily on English-language writers such as Achebe, Coetzee, Dangarembga, Fugard, Gordimer, Adichie and Soyinka. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3381  Middle East: Film and Literature  (5 Credits)  
This course explores how Middle Eastern and North African filmmakers and literary authors resist Western images and conceptions of these regions. Typical topics include the haunting impact of colonization on local cultures, landscapes, and histories; the intersection of various political identities; and remembrance as a radical act. Texts may include Raffo’s 9 Parts of Desire; Saadawi’s Frankenstein in Baghdad; films from Iran, Israel/Palestine, Algeria, Tunisia. As part of this Ways of Engaging course, students will work with political/climate refugees, local speakers, or community projects in Seattle. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3382  South Africa: Stages of Protest and Democracy  (5 Credits)  
This course will analyze protest narratives, ranging from popular and award-winning works like J. M. Coetzee's Age of Iron and Trevor Noah's Born a Crime to performances of AIDS survivors and state narratives intended to avoid civil war and attempt transitional justice. On-campus or study abroad. Typically offered: Occasionally.
SJC 3383  Arab Spring: Gender, Islam, Democracy  (5 Credits)  
This study abroad course will analyze how gender and religion are critical components to recent democratic movements in Islamic countries. Students will read articles on economic challenges, local women's movements, and historical connections between Christian and Muslim regions, such as Spain and Morocco, as well as Moroccan women writers such as Fatima Mernissi and Laila Lalami. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3384  US Imperialism in Asia Pacific Islands  (5 Credits)  
This course examines the cultural history of US imperialism in Asia throughout the 20th century including but not limited to the Philippines, Hawai’i and Pacific Islands, Korea, and Viet Nam. In particular, we’ll highlight works by Asian American/Asian diasporic writers and artists as they negotiate these histories of domination and resistance and consider the legacies of empire for today. Typically offered: Alternate Years.
SJC 3510  Theology, Culture, and Society  (5 Credits)  
Focuses on the public dimension of Christian life. How ought Christians to engage their culture? How do we insure that such engagement is truly Christian? Addresses several social issues of special concern to the contemporary church, such as race relations, war and peace, and the separation of church and state.
SJC 4899  Race, Representation, and Law  (5 Credits)  
In this capstone, students will draw upon the theory, methodologies and practices learned through out the major to examine the connections between law, policy, cultural representation and ideologies. Students will be asked to think about strategies that promote social justice and equity.
SJC 4930  Social Justice Practicum  (1-5 Credit)  
For advanced students who serve as teaching or research assistants for faculty.
SJC 4940  Internship  (1-5 Credit)  
Provides opportunities to gain practical experience in social justice and cultural work. Internships are strongly encouraged for all Social Justice and Cultural Studies majors as they begin exploring their vocational tracks.
SJC 4960  Designing Justice: Vocational Tracks  (2-5 Credit)  
As part of student’s requirements for experiential learning, this course asks students to demonstrate their understanding of their tracks, as they put together a reflective portfolio on their coursework, and as they create a senior project to present to the class. These projects will be turned in as part of their final grade. Each student will design a proposal and then finalize their project. Because this is experiential learning, students can choose the length of their final documentary videos, creative documentaries on social justice, visual components or websites, environmental racism research studies, graduate prep papers, etc, and accordingly, sign up for varying level of credits for their project in the course. All students must complete the reflective component and presentation and final project for at least 2 credits (2-5 credits possible). Typically offered: Winter.